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Now that Halloween is over, it’s time to get excited about Christmas! Okay, I’m excited about Thanksgiving, too, but I admit, I can’t wait to experience all things Christmas this year and if that means getting started a month early then so be it.
If you’re looking for things to do in Ohio in November, we’ve got you covered! We’re sharing a ton of ongoing events, and many of these will carry over into next month.
But if you’re like me, the longer you put something off, the more likely you will NOT do it. So I encourage you to read over the events and make a plan so you can enjoy all the memory-making fun this magical season offers.
Things to do in Ohio in November
November 3 – November 5, 2023
- All Hallows’ Eve | Terror Town will get you in the mood for Halloween! This haunted house attraction outside Cincinnati is full of spooky fun for adults. Attractions include a haunted trail, a ghost town, and axe throwing. Open Fridays and Saturdays through November 4.
- The first weekend of November brings the Christkindlmarkt to north Cincinnati. Hosted by the Germania Society of Cincinnati, this traditional German Christmas market is the perfect place to begin your Christmas shopping. Enjoy live music and hot spiced wine while you shop!
- The Mayberry Market is a great place to get a jump on your holiday shopping. Their Christmas Wonderland Holiday Market is scheduled for November 3 and 4 at the Auglaize County Fairgrounds in Wapakoneta. Browse a curated selection of vendors offering home goods, clothing, food, and drink.
November 10 – November 12, 2023
- Summer isn’t the only season for music festivals! Wilmington will host the Industrial Strength Bluegrass Festival on the second weekend of November. Formerly known as the Southern Ohio Indoor Music Festival, this event has three full days of American roots music and bluegrass.
- The Sugarplum Festival of Trees in Dayton is in its 56th year of fundraising for Dayton Children’s. The weekend festival kicks off Friday with a Holiday Tree Auction, as well as a craft beer and wine tasting, and a boutique featuring unique handmade items.
- Now in its fifth year, the Ironton Wizardfest fan festival weekend kicks off on Saturday, November 11th. Visitors can meet movie actors and enjoy all kinds of wizardly fun, from cosplay competitions to blacksmith forging.
November 17 – November 19, 2023
- Historic Springboro will host the 36th annual Christmas in Springboro and this year’s theme is “Winter Wonderland” Featuring over 75 craft vendors and nearly 30 food vendors, this event has pictures with Santa, a beer tent, an entertainment tent, a 5k run/walk, and a parade on Saturday.
- Lawrence County will be hosting the 8th Annual Festival of Trees and Christmas Market starting on November 17. The holiday tree and wreath auction supports community scholarships and development programs, while the Christmas market offers handmade items from over two dozen local vendors and artisans.
- The Creekside District in Gahanna will have its Holiday Lights Celebration on November 19. The afternoon event has live entertainment, train rides, visits with Santa Claus, plus a parade and tree lighting ceremony.
November 24 – November 28, 2023
- Dayton kicks off the holiday season on November 24 with the Dayton Holiday Festival. This one-day event is jam-packed with activities like a parade, a gingerbread house contest, live reindeer, horse-drawn wagon rides, and a holiday village.
- Sauder Village presents Merry & Bright Holiday Nights beginning on November 25th. Take a step back in time to see what Christmas was like from the 1830s through the 1920s. The event includes a holiday film, carolers, live animals, and Santa Claus! Additional nights include November 30, December 2, and December 9.
- The Saturday after Thanksgiving kicks off the holiday season in Wilmington, with the Hometown HoliDazzle Illuminated Parade and Festival. The parade features lighted floats, marching bands, tractors, and horses.
Ongoing Events Throughout the Month
- Cleveland Metroparks Zoo will host the Wild Winter Lights festival beginning on November 14. Over 1.5 million lights are used to create hundreds of light displays, with themes like Santa’s Workshop, Candyland, and Enchanted Forest. The event runs through December 30, with some days designated for drive-through visits, while others are set aside for walking through the displays.
- Beginning November 17 through January 1, Ohioans will flock to Delaware for Butch Bando’s Fantasy of Lights, one of the best drive-through holiday light displays in Ohio. After 23 years, this popular event is still family-owned and operated at the Alum Creek State Park Campground.
- Beginning November 21, Carillon Historic Park becomes a winter wonderland for A Carillon Christmas. The 65-acre park has dozens of holiday attractions in the month leading up to Christmas, including model train displays and miniature train rides, the Gristmill Christmas Village, concerts, letters to Santa, and more!
- The Christmas Ranch in Morrow has over a million dancing Christmas lights synchronized to Christmas music. From November 17 through December 23, you can visit six different Christmas shops plus Santa’s Bakery & Cafe, enjoy train and wagon rides, and pictures with Santa.
- The Canfield Fairground is home to Elegant Illusions, a drive-through Christmas display for six weeks from November 16 through January 1. Over 50 holiday scenes will include LED displays and high-tech animatronics. Tickets are available online or at the gate.
- At Gallipolis City Park along the Ohio River, Gallipolis in Lights will kick off on November 22 with the 11th Annual lighting ceremony and fireworks display. The lights display runs through January 2 and features several displays set to look like a scene from a Christmas movie.
- The 42nd Annual Holiday Tree Festival in Akron kicks off on November 11. Local businesses sponsor trees, decorations, and wreaths to benefit Akron Children’s Hospital. Events during the eight-day festival include a preview gala and breakfast with Santa.
- Toledo Zoo & Aquarium presents Lights Before Christmas, from November 17 through December 31. Over one million lights and more than 200 animal images make this a great Toledo event in November! Plan ahead as timed admission tickets are required.
- Cuyahoga County Fairgrounds hosts Magic of Lights from November 22 through December 31. Enjoy dozens of animated Christmas light displays, with discounts offered for advanced purchase of tickets.
- From November 17 through January 7, the Cincinnati Zoo will host the 41st Annual PNC Festival of Lights. Featuring 4 Million LED lights, roaming characters, 30 giant animal lanterns, a s’mores station, a North Pole Express train, and a family-friendly New Year’s Eve Countdown, this is one Ohio event you won’t want to miss.
- The world’s largest collection of life-size nutcrackers can be seen at the Steubenville Nutcracker Village from November 21 through January 6. Over 200 of them are on display in Steubenville and can be seen for free 24 hours a day. Additional days will feature special events like fireworks, Polar Express hayrides, a holiday market, a holiday hike, and a Nutcracker theater.
- The Ernest Warther Museum & Gardens will host the 30th Annual Warther Tree Festival in Dover. Running daily from November 11 through November 19, the event features over 100 decorated trees and wreaths. Proceeds from the event will benefit the Cleveland Clinic Union Hospital Auxiliary.
- Wildlights at Columbus Zoo is another holiday event that kicks off on November 17. Once the zoo closes each afternoon, the lights come on, with millions of LED lights, Santa and his reindeer, plus animated light displays. Weekends also feature a Holidays Craft Beer Celebration, with craft beer, seltzer, and cider from 25 breweries.
- Holiday Light Show is a national production with a location in Maumee, just outside of Toledo. The season kicks off on November 18, continuing on Friday through Monday each week of November and into December. Enjoy a dazzling light show synchronized to music on your car radio, along with light tunnels and giant characters throughout the drive-through display.
- For some of the best drive-through Christmas lights in Ohio, check out WonderLight’s Christmas in Ohio at the Hartford Fairgrounds. From November 10 through December 31, visitors can drive through the display which includes over one million LED lights synced to Christmas music you can stream through your car stereo!
- In Western Ohio, Washington Township hosts Woodland Lights on weekends from November 17 through December 23 at Countryside Park. Now in its 31st year, the event features ten acres of dazzling light displays, which can be enjoyed on foot or from the four-car train.
- Cincinnati has a 2nd Christkindl Market this month! The Cincinnati Christkindlmarkt at Moerlein Lager House will run from November 22 through December 31. Igloo rentals and an ice slide are a few of the fun activities available.
- Light Up Middletown is now in its 24th year and will be open every night from Thanksgiving through New Year’s Eve. This drive-through light display is held at Smith Park in Middletown and is just one of many events held during the holiday season. Admission is by cash donation only.
- The Yuletide Village Season of Lights in Waynesville will kick off on November 24 and runs on Fridays and Saturdays through December 16. The Yuletide Market features unique gifts, and there is a full roster of entertainment, food, and drink.
- Holiday Lights at Lost Creek Reserve will begin on November 25. A 1.25-mile driving loop passes by dozens of animated light displays. This activity is open Friday, Saturday, and Sunday evenings through December 23, with additional weekdays the week before Christmas.
- The name has changed, but the Pyramid Hill Lights event remains one of the holiday light shows in the tri-state area. From November 17 through December 31, you can enjoy over one million lights from the comfort of your car.
Do you know of an event that’s happening in Ohio in November? Leave a comment below so we can check it out too.